Global supply chain crisis brings empty shelves for the holiday season

Natalie Colarossi, Reporter

An increase in demand for products and a decrease in employees created a global supply chain crisis, according to CNBC.Over the past three months governments across the world have scrambled to resolve the problem before the holiday season, but empty shelves are more common than ever as Black Friday shopping quickly approaches. 

Demand for goods rocketed over the summer and will only put more pressure on Chinese factories still struggling with labor shortages and power outages. According to the Office of the United States Trade Representative, the United States depends on China for 18.1% of total imports, so when China hit an energy crisis and was struck with massive power outages, the U.S saw the consequences. 

According to ABC, the biggest factors of the market’s slowdown are the COVID-19 pandemic and the labor shortage. During the pandemic, certain items and services declined in use, and therefore declined in production. People are beginning to purchase those products again, when distributors and manufacturers aren’t returning to speed on providing them. 

Along with the effects of Coronavirus, the labor shortage became an added hurdle for companies. According to CNN, the trucking industry is short 80,000 drivers, and remains responsible for moving 71% of the U.S economy’s goods, more truckers are crucial to recovery from the crisis. 

President Biden opened two key ports on the west coast for 24-hour operation. The Los Angeles and Long Beach ports in California have faced the most traffic with container ships waiting days to be docked and unpacked. 

Florida Governor Ron Desantis said, “Florida Seaports have open capacity and can meet holiday demand.” The rest of his press release on the supply chain crisis is included on Desantis’ website. Rerouting ships to Florida will take time and can pose difficulties for transportation companies, but could put more products on the shelves this holiday season.